Panama Canal – The Land Divided, The World UnitedDid two more transits of the Canal this week. Chris came alone on the US boat Legacy, a Saga 43 and I did another transit a day later on the Dutch boat Fruit de Mer, an Allure 44. Now that I have the t-shirt I think I can stop running back and forth across the continent.
There are a ton of European boats that are doing their transit to the Pacific this time of year. Lots of opportunities for line-handlers, as each boat requires a skipper and 4 line handlers. The Canal has decided to take the South-bound boats (to the Pacific) through in one day, instead of having them anchor in Lake Gatun for the night. This means that most boats are doing a large part of the Canal at night. Last fall the rules were no hand-line boats at night, way too dangerous. Legacy was scheduled for a one day transit, but when we exited the Gatun locks they said we were too late to make the last lock down on the Pacific side, so we ended up in the lake for the night anyway and got to sight see during the daylight passage.
Chris, the casual skipper on Legacy stopping for some extra energy while a big Mersk freighter bares down in the lock. Chris left Alaska 9 years ago and is heading back up to Mexico to catch up with his wife.
Heading into the locks rafted up to two other sailboats.
The Gatun Locks doors closing on Fruit de Mer
The 360 foot, 170 passenger Star Flyer exiting the Canal.
Hiking through the trails and the old Fort Sherman roads, here in Shelter Bay, always allows some cool wildlife spotting. Actually, we hike out to go Sloth Spotting. Haven’t seen one yet.
This guy is a grumpy howler. The howler monkeys make the most amazing noise, must’ve scared the day lights out of the unsuspecting Spanish when they first landed on these shores.